The Palladium Challenge

Promoted by IPMI and Sponsored by Nornickel

Areas of Research

Projects from any field of science and technology can participate in the competition. However, palladium applications in the hydrogen economy (including hydrogen storage and cleaning films, catalysts for electrolyzers and fuel cells, and hydrogen sensors), battery technologies (with palladium as a battery energy density booster), sensors, industrial catalysts or alloys are seen as the most promising areas of the research.

Who Can Participate

Participation in The Palladium Challenge is not restricted. All laboratories, universities, individual scientists, engineers, and entrepreneurs with a great idea are encouraged to participate.

The Palladium Challenge Criteria

The winner(s) will be determined by a panel of renowned experts in science and technology and the PGM market. The panel’s decision will be based on the following key criteria:

  1. The scientific novelty of the proposed project
  2. Economic feasibility and sustainability of the project
  3. Minimum annual palladium demand in thousands of troy ounces generated by the proposed application

Submit Your Project by Registering Below

IPMI Palladium Challenge 4

Email(Required)
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1.(Required)
The Palladium Challenge is open to all. Participation is subject to all federal, state, and local laws and regulations. Void where prohibited or restricted by law. Participant is responsible for checking applicable laws and regulations in participant’s jurisdiction before participating in the Palladium Challenge to make sure participant’s entry and participation is legal. Participant is responsible for abiding by participant’s employer’s policies and procedures regarding participation in the Palladium Challenge. IPMI is not the Sponsor of the Palladium Challenge. IPMI disclaims any and all liability or responsibility for any matter that may arise between and/or among participants, their respective employers or others, including the Sponsor, as relates to the Palladium Challenge. Entry into the Palladium Challenge constitutes your full and unconditional acceptance of these Registration Terms. The Official Rules, as to be promulgated by the Palladium Challenge Sponsor, Norilsk Nickel (through its subsidiary Metal Trade Overseas SA) (“NorNickel” or “Sponsor”) are provided to you prior to accepting any submissions into the Palladium Challenge. Participants agree to look solely to the Sponsor for any claim arising from the Palladium Challenge.

2.(Required)
By participating in the Registration and the Palladium Challenge, you agree to be bound by these Registration Terms, the Official Rules and the decisions of the Sponsor, which decisions are final and binding in all respects. By completing this registration and participating in the Palladium Challenge, you agree to release and hold IPMI, its affiliates, directors, officers, and members harmless from and against any and all losses, damages, rights, claims, actions and liabilities of any kind in connection with the Palladium Challenge or receipt of the prize. The participant assumes all liability for any injury, death or damage caused, or allegedly caused, by participating in the Palladium Challenge or use or receipt of the prize.

3.(Required)
By participating in the Registration and the Palladium Challenge, participant hereby irrevocably (a) grants to IPMI the right to use participant’s name, likeness, image and biographical information in any and all media for any purpose including, without limitation, advertising and promotional purposes relating to the Palladium Challenge; and (b) releases IPMI from any liability with respect thereto. Participant acknowledges that participant’s privacy rights will be limited in the Palladium Challenge.

4.(Required)
IPMI makes no claim to ownership of participant’s submissions or any intellectual property it may contain. By completing this registration, participant consents to the use by IPMI, its affiliates and licensees, of participant’s name, likeness, and images in connection with the Palladium Challenge, in any media or format now known or hereafter invented, in any and all locations worldwide, without any payment to or further approval or consent. Participant agrees that this consent is perpetual and irrevocable.

5.(Required)
Participants acknowledge IPMI’s limited role in the Palladium Challenge and agree to be bound by these Registration Terms, the Official Rules and Sponsor’s decisions. As a condition of entering, participant(s) agree: (a) to release IPMI, their affiliates, and each of their officers, directors, employees, representatives and agents from any and all liability, loss or damage incurred with respect to participant’s participation, the awarding, receipt, possession, and/or use or misuse of any award, (b) participants waive all rights to claim punitive, incidental, consequential, or any other damages; (c) all causes of action arising out of or connected with the Palladium Challenge, or any prize awarded, shall be resolved individually, without resort to any form of action or class action; (d) all issues and questions concerning the construction, validity, interpretation and enforceability of these Releases/Disclaimers in connection with the Palladium Challenge, shall be governed by, and construed in accordance with, the laws of State of Delaware, without giving effect to any choice of law or conflict of law rules; and (e) participants irrevocably consent and agree to resolve any disputes of any nature arising out of these terms or in connection with the Palladium Challenge in arbitration pursuant to the rules of the AAA in such jurisdiction and venue as selected by the IPMI in its sole and absolute discretion. Except where prohibited by law, acceptance of the prize constitutes winner’s consent to use his/her name, likeness, and biographical data for IPMI’s promotional purposes without additional compensation. IPMI, its affiliates, directors, members, employees or agents are not responsible for errors, problems or malfunctions relating to or in connection with the Palladium Challenge, including without limitation, errors, problems or malfunctions which may occur in connection with the administration of the Palladium Challenge, the announcement of the prizes, the processing of entries or in any Challenge related materials; or for transactions that are lost, misdirected, or fail to enter into the processing system for any reason; or are processed, reported, or transmitted late or incorrectly; or are lost for any reason, including computer, telephonic, paper-transfer, human error, electronic, computer, telephonic malfunction, damage, error, omission, interruption, defect, delay in operation or transmission, or any combination thereof.

I Agree to the Palladium Challenge Official Rules(Required)
1. Introduction

By entering into the Palladium Challenge (as defined in Section 2 (Description of the Palladium Challenge) below), you, the participant (“Participant”) agrees to abide by these Official Contest Rules and Legal Disclaimer and the decisions of the Sponsor and the Panel of Judges, such decisions which are final and binding in all respects. No purchase necessary to enter or win.

2. Description of the Palladium Challenge

Palladium is one of the Platinum Group Metals (PGMs), famous for its catalytic capabilities and valuable characteristics. It is widely utilized in the automotive industry as an essential part of catalytic converters. Besides that, the metal’s areas of use include chemical and petrochemical catalysts, electronic devices production (especially MLCC’s and connectors), as well as dental restoration and jewelry.

Metal Trade Overseas AG (the “Sponsor”) is part of the Norilsk Nickel group. Norilsk Nickel (or Nornickel) is the global leader in palladium production, with a share of more than 40% of the primary palladium market. As the largest palladium producer, Nornickel feels responsible for developing the palladium market and promoting metal use in new areas. That is why Nornickel would like to encourage scientists worldwide to take a more detailed look at palladium and its potential applications in their research areas. In order to do that, the Sponsor, with the assistance of International Precious Metals Educational and Scientific Foundation, a non-profit foundation (“IPMI”), launches this scientific award challenge for individuals and institutions who come up with the most viable and sustainable technological solutions that will generate substantial demand for palladium (“Innovation”), subject to the terms and conditions of these Official Contest Rules (the “Palladium Challenge” or the “Contest”).

Areas or research (i.e. fields of science and technology) are not restricted. However, priority will be given to Innovations with focus on palladium applications in the hydrogen economy (including hydrogen storage, transportation and cleaning films, catalysts for electrolyzers and fuel cells, hydrogen sensors), battery technologies (with palladium as a battery energy density booster), sensors, industrial catalysts, or alloys.

The Palladium Challenge is governed by the terms of the Official Contest Rules and administered by the Organizing Committee formed from the representatives of the Sponsor and IPMI.

3. Eligibility

The Palladium Challenge is open to any individual worldwide who is 18 years of age or older at the time of entry in accordance with Section 3 (How to Enter) below. Employees, officers, directors, or agents of the Sponsor and IPMI, their affiliates, agencies, or agents, as well as immediate family members (defined as spouse, parents, siblings, children, and grandparents) and same household members of any such employee, officer, director, or agent, are not eligible to participate in the Contest.

All applicable federal, state, and local laws and regulations apply. Void where prohibited or restricted by law. Each participant is responsible for checking applicable laws and regulations in Participant’s jurisdiction before participating in the Palladium Challenge to make sure Participant’s entry and participation is legal. Participant is responsible for abiding by participant’s employer’s policies and procedures regarding participation in the Palladium Challenge. Sponsor disclaims any and all liability or responsibility for disputes arising between the Participant and Participant’s employer related to the Contest.

Eligibility is at the sole and absolute discretion of the Organizing Committee and the Panel of Judges, and they shall be entitled to reject any Participant for any reason or no reason at all without having to provide an explanation.

The Sponsor reserves the right, in its sole discretion, to cancel, suspend, or terminate the Contest for any reason and without prior notice to any Participant.

4. Contest Timing
  • Entry submission: the entry submissions can be made during the period commencing at 00:01 EST on October 25, 2021 and ending at 23:59 EST on May 31, 2022 (the “Entry Submission Period”).
  • Judging: all Innovations submitted by eligible Participants will be evaluated by the Panel of Judges in accordance with the criteria set out in Section 7 (Judging) below, as a result of which up to three (3) prize winners will be determined. The Panel of Judges will make its determination on the winning Innovations, in its sole and absolute discretion, by September 1, 2022.
  • Winners announcement: the winner(s) will be announced on or before September 1, 2022 and the awards ceremony will be held at the IPMI dinner in New York, USA.

The Sponsor reserves the right to extend the Entry Submission Period in its sole discretion, in which case the timing for other stages of the Contest, including the judging and the winners announcement, will be extended accordingly. Any such changes will be announced at https://ipmi.corgano.com/, and these Rules will be deemed modified with effect from such announcement.

5. How to Enter

To enter a Contest, visit the online registration form at https://ipmi.corgano.com/ and follow the instructions provided. The entry must be completed during the Entry Submission Period referred to in Section 4 (Contest Timing) above. Incorrect, fraudulent, incomplete, late, or otherwise non-conforming entries or entries that are intended to annoy, abuse, threaten, or harass any person or entity in any way will not be considered and will not be permitted to enter the Contest.

Limit of one (1) entry per person per Contest; multiple entries by any one individual are void. Entries generated by macro, script, or other automated means are void. Any entrant using fraudulent means to participate in a Contest will be disqualified and may be guilty of violating applicable state and federal criminal laws.

To participate in the Palladium Challenge, applicants have to complete all fields of the online registration form and to provide reasonable amount of details about the Innovation so the Organizing Committee and the Panel of Judges may assess entry’s eligibility for the Contest. The Organizing Committee and the Panel of Judges may request additional information from the Participant to better understand the Innovation and/or assess entry’s eligibility. To maintain eligibility to participate in the Contest, the Participant hereby agrees to timely respond to any such questions or queries.

6. Provision of Materials and Information/Intellectual Property

By entering into a Contest, Participant represents and warrants to each of the Sponsor, IPMI, the Organizing Committee and the Panel of Judges as follows: (1) that it fully owns or has properly licensed whatever materials or information it submits hereunder in connection with the Contest and can make such submissions without violating any: applicable law, agreement with any third-party, and/or third-party right of any kind (including without limitation any intellectual property, data protection, privacy, or publicity right); and (2) that any and all materials or information provided by it hereunder shall be true and correct in all respects.

The Participant grants to Sponsor, IPMI, the Organizing Committee and the Panel of Judges the right to review the Innovations and post a reasonable amount of information describing the submission, any video, diagrams or images that Participant may submit or prepare in connection with the Contest.

Neither Sponsor nor IPMI makes any claim to ownership of Participant’s submissions or any intellectual property it may contain. Participants retain any intellectual property, if any, in the submissions and assume all responsibility for any protection thereof. The Sponsor and IPMI assumes no responsibility or liability whatsoever for any publication, use or dissemination of any submissions in connection with the Palladium Challenge.

Furthermore, without limitation on anything set forth herein, by entering into the Contest, each Participant consents that each of the Sponsor, IPMI, their respective affiliates and partner organizations shall have the irrevocable, transferable, free-of-charge and fully sublicensable right and license (but not the obligation) to exploit any and all such materials or information submitted by such Participant hereunder solely in connection with the Contest in any manner it so elects to promote the Contest, its business, brand, products and/or services, throughout the world in perpetuity, and in any and all media, now or hereafter known, without any payment to or further approval or consent.

The Participant acknowledges and agrees that the intent of the Contest is to promote innovation in the use of palladium. Participant’s participation in the Contest does not create any obligation on Sponsor’s or IPMI’s part to enter into any further business relationship or to promote Participant’s Innovation in any way, nor does it create any relationship, fiduciary, contractual or otherwise between the Sponsor and IPMI, on the one hand and the Participant, on the other, other than as expressly set forth herein.

7. Judging

All entries will first be verified to ensure that they meet the entry criteria set out in Section 5 (How to Enter) above. After that the Panel of Judges will score the qualifying Innovations. The Panel of Judges will be composed by members selected by the Sponsor together with its parent and affiliate partner organizations and the Organizing Committee.

The criteria used to assess the Innovations are as follow:

  • Scientific novelty of the project;
  • Commercial viability and sustainability of the project;
  • Palladium demand estimated in thousands troy ounces annually generated by the proposed project for palladium’s application.

The Panel of Judges will rank all projects of the qualifying Participants. As part of assessing and scoring the Innovations, the Panel of Judges will conduct in-person and/or video/phone interviews with the Participants.

The Participant who scores the highest according to the above judging criteria will be deemed the First Prize Winner. The next-highest (after the First Prize Winner) scoring Participant will be deemed the Second Prize Winner. The next-highest (after the Second Prize Winner) scoring Participant will be deemed the Third Prize Winner.

The Sponsor and the Panel of Judges reserve the right not to select any winners and/or not to award any prize if the Panel of Judges determines that no submission meet the criteria of the Contest set out in this Section. The decisions of Sponsor and the Panel of Judges are final and binding in all matters.

8. Prizes; Notifying Prize Winners

Prize Winners determined pursuant to Section 7 (Judging) above will receive the following prizes (“Prize(s)”):

  • Prize for the First Prize Winner – US$200,000
  • Prize for the Second Prize Winner – US$100,000
  • Prize for the Third Prize Winner – US$50,000

Notwithstanding anything to the contrary in these Official Contest Rules, if at any time during the Entry Submission Period or the Judging, the Sponsor determines that there are no [or not enough] qualifying Participants from whom the Prize Winners could be determined, the Sponsor may in its sole discretion suspend or terminate the Contest or modify it in any manner it deems appropriate in its sole and absolute discretion, including, without limitation, by not awarding any of the Prizes set out in this Section.

IPMI will contact all Prize Winners by email to notify that they have won and are entitled to a Prize. IPMI is not responsible for digital communications that are undeliverable as a result of any filtering of any kind, insufficient space in a Participant’s account, or any other failure beyond its reasonable control. In the event of a dispute with respect to entries received from more than one user having the same e-mail address/account, the authorized subscriber of the account in question at the time of entry will be deemed the proper entrant. Additionally, all winners will be announced on IPMI’s website. Each winner must show picture identification to claim the Prize. Any potential winner will forfeit his or her Prize if he or she: (1) fails to respond in a timely manner to any requests for information or signatures with respect the Contest or the Prize; (2) cannot be reached at the information provided by such individual; (3) rejects the Prize; or (4) is disqualified from the Contest for any reason. In the event of any forfeiture hereunder, an alternate winner may be selected by the Panel of Judges. Prize Winners are solely responsible for all applicable: (1) federal, state, and local taxes; and (2) out-of-pocket expenses, associated with Prize acceptance and use, provided however that Sponsor will reimburse reasonable travel expenses for the Prize Winners to participate at the awards ceremony at the IPMI Dinner in New York on 16 September, 2022, (the “Final Event”) provided that in no event the amount to be so reimbursed by the Sponsor shall exceed US$15,000 in aggregate for all Prize Winners. Winners’ participation at the awards ceremony at the IPMI Dinner in New York on 16 September, 2022 is desirable but not mandatory to receive the award.

9. Publicity

Subject to applicable law, submission of the Invention for this Contest constitutes the Participant’s consent to each of Sponsor, IPMI and their respective affiliates to use Participant’s name, voice, likeness, opinions, and biographical information for marketing, advertising, and publicity purposes in any media throughout the world at any time without the obligation to seek consent or to provide Participant with any payment or other form of consideration. Participant’s consent hereunder in connection with the Contest is irrevocable.

10. Release

Subject to applicable law, by entering into the Contest and potentially receiving a Prize, each Participant and winner agrees to release, discharge, and hold harmless each of Sponsor, IPMI, along with Sponsor’s and IPMI’s employees, officers, directors, affiliates, partners, agents and assigns, from and against any claim, cause of action, demand, or proceeding (each, a “Claim”), and any resultant loss, injury (including death), cost, expense, fee, fine, penalty, or other loss or expense of any kind, including attorneys’ fees (each, a “Loss”), relating to or arising directly or indirectly out of his or her participation in the Contest (or related activity such as a press release), and/or Sponsor’s and IPMI’s right to exploit Participant’s name and/or likeness or fully exploit any other right granted to it hereunder, and/or from Participant’s receipt, use, or misuse of any Prize, no matter how such Claim or Loss arises (including without limitation, if arising out of any damage to a Participant’s computer system from downloading or using material from IPMI’s (or an affiliate of IPMI’s) website).

11. Covid-19 Constraint

Due to the unknown future effects of the COVID-19 global health crisis and any related impacts, the Sponsor reserves the right in its sole discretion to modify the timing and/or format of the Contest and the Final Event, including but not limited to postponing the Final Event or holding the Final Event in a virtual format. If such changes are made, the new timing and/or format will be noted in these Official Rules and at https://ipmi.corgano.com/.

12. Limitation of Liability

IN NO EVENT WILL SPONSOR AND/OR SPONSOR’S PARENT, SUBSIDIARY, LICENSEES, EMPLOYEES, AGENTS, OFFICERS, DIRECTORS, ASSIGNS, AFFILIATES, OR RELATED COMPANIES (COLLECTIVELY WITH SPONSOR, THE “SPONSOR PARTIES”) NOR WILL IPMI AND/OR IPMI’S PARENT, SUBSIDIARY, LICENSEES, EMPLOYEES, AGENTS, OFFICERS, DIRECTORS, ASSIGNS, AFFILIATES, OR RELATED COMPANIES (COLLECTIVELY WITH IPMI, THE “IPMI PARTIES”), BE RESPONSIBLE OR LIABLE FOR ANY INDIRECT, INCIDENTAL, CONSEQUENTIAL, OR PUNITIVE DAMAGES (INCLUDING WITHOUT LIMITATION LOST PROFITS) ARISING OUT OF ANY PARTICIPANT’S PARTICIPATION IN THE CONTEST, THESE OFFICIAL CONTEST RULES, AND/OR ANY PARTICIPANT’S RECEIPT OF A PRIZE, NO MATTER UNDER WHAT THEORY ARISING, EVEN IF ANY SPONSOR PARTY AND/OR IPMI PARTY HAS BEEN ADVISED OF THE POSSIBILITY OF SUCH DAMAGES.

SPONSOR PARTIES SHALL HAVE NO LIABILITY WHATSOEVER WITH RESPECT TO: ANY PARTICIPANT’S PARTICIPATION IN THE CONTEST, THESE OFFICIAL CONTEST RULES, AND/OR ANY PARTICIPANT’S RECEIPT OR FAILURE TO RECEIVE A PRIZE, IF ANY. IPMI PARTIES SHALL HAVE NO LIABILITY WHATSOEVER WITH RESPECT TO: ANY PARTICIPANT’S PARTICIPATION IN THE CONTEST, THESE OFFICIAL CONTEST RULES, AND/OR ANY PARTICIPANT’S RECEIPT OR FAILURE TO RECEIVE A PRIZE, IF ANY.

13. Use of Collected Materials and Information

Sponsor will be collecting, storing, and exploiting personal data about Participants to administer the Contest and exercise its rights hereunder, including without limitation, those relating to marketing and publicity. By entering into the Contest, Participants consent to Sponsor’s collection and IPMI’s use of their personal information. Sponsor, IPMI, the Organizing Committee and the Panel of Judges will not disclose any Participant’s personal information to any non-affiliated third party.

IPMI does not intend to collect, copy or retain any personal information for the Participants or the Inventions.

14. Dispute Resolution

The parties hereto acknowledge and agree as follows: (1) that all disputes, causes of action, and claims connected to or arising in any way hereunder between the parties shall be resolved solely on an individual basis (i.e., class actions suits are hereby waived by the parties), and exclusively by arbitration pursuant to the terms and rule promulgated by the American Arbitration Association (“AAA”); (2) that the laws of the State of NY shall govern these Official Contest Rules, without regard to any conflict of laws principles.

15. Indemnification

By participating in the Contest, Participant agrees to release, indemnify and hold harmless Sponsor Parties and IPMI Parties from and against any injuries, losses, damages, claims, actions and any liability of any kind resulting from or arising out of Participant’s participation in or association with the Contest. Sponsor and IPMI are not responsible for any miscommunication such as technical failures related to computer, telephone, cable, and unavailable network or server connections, related technical failures, or other failures related to hardware, software or virus, or incomplete, late or misdirected entries. Any compromise to the fair and proper conduct of this Contest may result in the disqualification of a Participant’s submission, termination of the Contest, or other remedial action, at the Sponsor’s sole discretion.

16. No Sponsor Obligation

Participant acknowledges that multiple participants may submit Innovations that contain concepts, ideas, innovations or technologies similar to each other and that Sponsor, its subsidiaries and business partners may already be investigating or developing solutions or business activities that are related or similar to those contained in a submitted Innovation. Participant further acknowledges and agrees that Sponsor’s action with respect to another Innovation, even if similar to another submission, shall not create in Sponsor any liability to Participant or others. Further, Sponsor is not and shall not be restricted in any way from pursuing, developing, or commercializing, in any way that Sponsor sees fit, independent of entrant and at Sponsor’s sole discretion, any technology that is created independent of Participant’s submission. Participant acknowledges Sponsor is not obligated to take any action whatsoever with regard to its Innovation. By entering the Contest Participant waives all rights to seek injunctive or equitable relief, or to claim punitive, incidental or consequential damages, or attorneys’ fees.

Signature